Family Assault is essentially the same as an Assault, except that it is committed by one family member or spouse against another. To be considered Family Assault or Domestic Violence as opposed to a typical assault, those involved must be living in the same home at the time of the offense.
(a) A person commits an offense if the person: (1) intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly causes bodily injury to another, including the person's spouse; (2) intentionally or knowingly threatens another with imminent bodily injury, including the person's spouse; or (3) intentionally or knowingly causes physical contact with another when the person knows or should reasonably believe that the other will regard the contact as offensive or provocative.
(2) a person whose relationship to or association with the defendant is described by Section 71.0021(b), 71.003, or 71.005, Family Code, if: (A) it is shown on the trial of the offense that the defendant has been previously convicted of an offense under this chapter, Chapter 19, or Section 20.03, 20.04, 21.11, or 25.11 against a person whose relationship to or association with the defendant is described by Section 71.0021(b), 71.003, or 71.005, Family Code; or (B) the offense is committed by intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly impeding the normal breathing or circulation of the blood of the person by applying pressure to the person's throat or neck or by blocking the person's nose or mouth;
Typically in a Family Assault case, the court will issue a restraining orderbetween the accused and the alleged victim. Violation of a Court Order may result in additional criminal charges filed.
Family Violence case can be either Misdemeanors or Felonys. Often times, the penalties for family assault or domestic violence are harsher than would be normal for a standard assault. Domestic Violence offenses can often lead to jail time and a temporary or permanant loss of parental rights. There may also be a loss of Firearm Rights, and individuals on Probation will need to surrender all registered (and unregistered) firearms.
|Level of Offense||Punishment|
|Class C Misdemeanor||Not Jailable, No more than $500 fines|
|Class B Misdemeanor||Not more than 180 days in a county jail, and/or no more than $2,000 fines|
|Class A Misdemeanor||Not more than 1 year in a county jail, and/or no more than $4,000 fines|
|State jail felony||180 days to 2 years in a state jail, and/or no more than $10,000 fines|
|3rd Degree Felony||2-10 Years in Prison, and/or no more than $10,000 fines|
When responding to a dispute, officers often form judgments based on little evidence other than 'he said/she said' -- especially if one person has any scratches or marks.
In recent years, there has been an increase in 'Revenge Domestic Violence' reports, where a husband or wife claims domestic violence in retaliation to a verbal argument, using the law for their own gains.
Family Assault convictions can be used to enhance a current Family Assault charge. For instance, if an individual has been convicted of a Misdemeanor Family Assault, and they are arrested on a new Misdemeanor Family Assault, the prosecution can enchance the new offense to a Third Degree Felony.
Strangulation, or hands at the neck cause a stoppage odf breathing or restriction of the airway will also elevate or enhance the new offense to a 3rd Degree Felony.
A Family Assault conviction will cause a loss of the right to own or possess (or use) a Firearm. This is true at the Misdemeanor of Felony level.
A Family Assault charge that is resolved through Deferred Adjudication cannot be sealed through a Motion for Non-Disclosure. The Dismissal will remain, but it cannot be sealed.
The Keates Law Firm has over 10+ Years Experience handling criminal defense cases. Our focus is to try and have the case dismissed against you. We don't even discuss pleas until all legal and negotiation options have been explored in detail. This includes Motions to Suppress, Motions to Exclude Evidence based on Invalid Searches or Miranda Right Violations, and Probable Cause determinations.
Our Results Speak for Themselves. Keates Law Firm has a record of dismissals and acquittals in a variety of criminal cases. We are dismissal focused, and we get results.
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